Sixteen ensembles to battle it out in the seventh international chamber competition.

Over the past five months, the hunt for some of the world’s most talented young chamber musicians has been taking place. Now, as that search nears its end, the Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition has announced its 16 finalists. Held every four years, the competition, presented by Chamber Music Australia, is regarded as one of the top awards of its kind in the world, recognising the best and brightest talents, aged under 35 years-old.

Eight string quartets and eight piano trios have been selected from almost 50 ensembles worldwide following an international auditions tour, which visited Melbourne, Vienna, Hanover, Paris, London and New York. Australian pianist and composer Ian Munro was one of the judges who during the three-week screening process was charged with whittling this number down. Munro’s criteria included a sense of fun and familiarity. “The particular beauty of chamber music is often said to relate to an intimate conversation,” he said. “I like to hear a small group playing as if they were sharing a game that surprises and delights them as they go along.”

Of the 16 groups chosen as 2015’s finalists, one trio and one quartet will be named the best in their category before one ensemble is crowned overall-winner of the 7th Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition, receiving a number of coveted touring opportunities as well as a substantial cash-prize. An Audience Choice Award and a Touring Award will also be up for grabs. The unenviable task of selecting 2015’s winners falls to a panel of seven distinguished international jurors including Vladimir Balshin, cellist from Russia’s internationally acclaimed Borodin Quartet, celebrated Chinese-American composer, conductor and pianist Bright Sheng, Irina Morozova from Australia’s Goldner String Quartet and ANAM professor and cellist Howard Penny. Music lovers across Asutralia can keep abreast of all the competition’s developments from the comfort of their own homes, as the proceedings will be broadcast live on ABC Classic FM. 

The Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition takes place at the Melbourne Recital Centre from July 11 – 19

MICMC 2015 Finalists

String Quartets

Altius Quartet (USA)
Argus Quartet (USA)
Aris Quartet (Germany)
Castalian Quartet (UK, France, Israel)
Giocoso Quartet (Germany, Netherlands)
Noga Quartet (Israel, France)
Patronus Quartet (Australia)
Verona Quartet (USA, Singapore, Canada)

Piano Trios

Allant Trio (USA, South Korea, Canada)
Estivo Trio (Australia)
Linos Trio (UK)
Trio Adorno (Germany)
Trio Bonnesis (Australia, Germany)
Trio Medici (France, Russia)
Trio Palmer (France)
Classicus Trio (Russia)